Believe in yourself and all that you are. Know that there is something inside you that is greater than any obstacle. ~Christain D. Larson
The foundation of all life’s successes and positive sense of self is grounded in a belief that one is safe. The fruits of a strong belief that we are safe include good self-confidence, trust in oneself and life, and gratefulness for being who we are. These in turn directly influence the choices we make, the actions we take or don’t take and especially how we treat ourselves.
All so-called mental illnesses are a ‘crisis of belief’; hopelessness that one’s safety can ever be assured. After doing everything society encouraged us to do…follow certain standards, seek specific knowledge, work for certain employers, engage in relationships with those who society approves of and so on, we may well be left empty and anxious about that emptiness. We may have every material item consumer scientists assure us will make us happy, yet we may well continue to be dissatisfied and despairing that the future is more of the same. We may have reached the pinnacle of our profession, considered the best parents on the block or the best community volunteer ever, but perhaps we are left feeling not quite accomplished. We may have become people pleasers out of fear that if we disappoint others, there will be some terrible consequence that we cannot identify or control, all the while seething with resentment because others take advantage of our inability to protect ourselves. We may faithfully take the antidepressant(s), drink several beers, or smoke a pack of cigarettes, only to find we feel alternately dulled and lifeless or hyper and agitated. All of these actions we may have taken. Yet, we still don’t feel quite safe, quite good enough, quite worthy, quite valued…
When we feel ‘unsafe’ we trigger primal responses that ensure we survive. We are born pre-programmed to find ways to ‘survive’. Some of that automatic response includes the release of the ‘fight or flight’ hormone called cortisol. Unfortunately cortisol only makes things worse by fueling the urgency to ‘save’ oneself; it does not allow for rational, objective thinking and problem solving.
By finding creative ways to eliminate the feeling of danger many people refer to as anxiety or fear, the brain, starting in the formative years, develops a set of conditioned responses that will ensure a feeling of survival. Because these responses do in fact work (that you have survived is proof enough for the brain), an adult becomes a person who is trying valiantly to build a life on a belief system established in early childhood that has at its core, a prevailing feeling of being unsafe. The problem is that the logical brain (with the minuscule amount of data it has at its disposal) simply cannot figure out what the danger actually is. It often chooses to react with cortisol to old triggers of the past that it filed away as data – just to be on the safe side – thereby keeping us filled with cortisol, negativity and relentless anxiousness. Sadly, the harder the brain works to keep us surviving and ‘safe’, the subconscious mind believes we are simply not safe.
People seek healing from their ‘crisis’ sometimes succumbing to therapies that seek to prove them flawed and ‘ill’, resigning themselves to a fate involving addictive chemical concoctions (psychiatric drugs) and electroshock designed to damage their brain without realizing their brain is only doing the job it is required to do by nature. Like the mailroom boy in a large organization, the brain has nothing to say about the direction our lives will take or why…it simply carries out orders. It reacts as one’s belief instructs it to. There is simply no use blaming the brain as conventional therapies tend to do.
Pharmaceutical drugs, alcohol, pot (cannabis), cigarettes or any other psychoactive drug appears to the brain to be assisting in the survival process because these substances dim, for a while, the strength of the anxiousness and feelings of fear. In fact, though the person is distracted by the drug’s effects, the actual emotional distress is still very much alive, resurfacing again as soon as the drug’s effects subside. The brain, conditioned to rely on this relief, though it may be very short-lived, soon becomes dependent and eventually addicted to the substance as a way of generating a feeling of survival. You will note that I say “feeling of survival’…a feeling of safety. But in fact the substance is interfering with survival and preventing a true review of what is actually causing the feelings of being unsafe. The brain is indeed being misled by a feeling of being safe, when in fact the behavior engaged in to produce that feeling is dangerous.
Many people recognize that psychiatric drugs and long talk-therapy cannot overcome issues of ‘belief’ in ones worth and safety. They reach for therapies that can help them climb yet one more rung on the ladder to complete fulfilment of their own unique journey. They are looking for a feeling of completeness, of peace, of acceptance, of trust. Upon finding these aspects of themselves, a feeling of safety prevails, complete with an understanding that natural human feelings are just that, ‘natural’, and an important guidance mechanism. By taking the natural route to self-fulfilment, they have avoided harming their brain and other organs and especially the resultant life-long withdrawal symptoms and psychotic experiences caused by psychiatric drugs.
The seed of belief that one is unsafe in one’s world is planted in very early childhood. Thereafter, events occur that will only confirm in that’s persons mind, their view of not being good enough and therefore of not being quite safe in their environment. Soon, it becomes impossible for that person to allow themselves to trust in the fact the Universe knows precisely what it is doing and regardless what society has presented them with as experience, there is nothing or no one that can diminish their worth and importance to this Universal puzzle we call life.
This is where a qualified regression hypnotherapist can be invaluable. They can guide a client to that place within themselves where the unproductive belief is found and help to dissolve not only the seed but the roots to all issues of being unsafe using the subconscious mind. They can also help plant a new, productive belief of self-love and self-appreciation, nourish the roots to good self-confidence and gratefulness and build a rock-solid foundation of trust in oneself and one’s Universe.
Grace Joubarne is a Certified Clinical Hypnotherapist and founder of GracePlace Wellness, a freelance writer, blogger (AskGrace!) and decades-long advocate of sustainable living, non-GMO and chemical-free foods, fluoride-free drinking water and alternative health care modalities. For Grace’s verifiable credentials: www.graceplacewellness.ca/About . Visit her new GracePlace Wellness Blog where your comments are always welcome!